Three years ago in AA (Somalia) v ECO (Addis Ababa) [2013] UKSC 81, the Supreme Court considered whether a Somali child in her brother-in-law’s care under the doctrine of Kafalah – a process of legal guardianship and the Islamic equivalent to adoption – was an adopted child under the Immigration Rules, paragraph 352D relating to leave to enter or remain as the child of a refugee. The court held that paragraph 352D did not extend to AA’s case. Last month Lady Hale and Lords Kerr, Wilson, Reed and Hughes considered the question whether an Algerian child known as “SM” adopted under the Kafalah system is a direct descendant or extended family member of her sponsor within the meaning of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006, regs 7 & 8 which transpose Directive 2004/38/EC, arts 2 & 3. Mr and Mrs M are French nationals exercising free movement rights in the UK. They have been resident here for many years and Mr M has a permanent right of residence. In 2009 they went to Algeria and became SM’s legal guardians pursuant to Kafalah in 2011. Continue reading »